Tŝilhqot’in National Government Fisheries Department

We are the River People. The Tŝilhqot’in people have fished ts’eman (sockeye), Jaŝ (Chinook), and tislagh (steelhead) since time immemorial. The Tŝilhqot’in carry inherent rights and responsibilities as stewards of these important resources. We have fought and made huge sacrifices to protect our Territory and our fish. 

The Tŝilhqot’in Territory includes the entire Chilcotin watershed and includes 3 major salmon-bearing watersheds: The Chilcotin, the Chilko, and the Taseko Rivers. This is a vast area – approximately 2/3 the size of Vancouver Island.

Our unique Tŝilhqot’in Fisheries are strong, but threatened

The Tŝilhqot’in Territory is a salmon stronghold. One of the strongest sockeye salmon runs in North America, the Tŝilhqox Ts’eman (Chilko River sockeye), spawns in our Title lands. Using traditional selective fishing methods (primarily dipnet), the community-based Tŝilhqot’in salmon fishery is one of the most selective and sustainable in the world.

Our fish have faced challenges, including the decline of Tislagh (steelhead) and Jaŝ (Chinook), and the lowest returns of Ts’eman (sockeye) on record in 2019 and 2020. Our stewardship responsibility is to work toward recovery and rebuilding for all our salmon stocks to support a thriving, resilient traditional fishery for the future. 

Tŝilhqot’in Nation-wide Fisheries Vision

The Tŝilhqot’in Nation conducted a strategic planning process in 2018 with extensive engagement with Leadership and communities to identify Nation-wide fisheries priorities and goals. The result was the Tŝilhqot’in Nation-wide Fisheries Vision, which was adopted in 2019 and forms the foundation for the implementation of priority strategic fisheries-related activities, along with ongoing feedback from Leadership and TNG senior staff through our annual planning and communications cycle.

Tŝilhqot’in Nation-wide Fisheries Vision

Fisheries Team

  • Randy Billyboy, Fisheries Manager
  • Michelle Tung, Fisheries Strategy Lead
  • Pete Nicklin, Biologist
  • Leonard English, Fisheries Field Coordinator
  • Gerald William, Senior Fisheries Technician
  • Winston Bambrick, Fisheries Technician/Junior Hatchery manager
  • Andrea Sterling, Biologist
  • Aimee Arsenault, Communications

Learn about our Nation-wide priorities and activities


Aquatic Habitat and Watersheds